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October 2014

TRANSPORTATION INFORMATION CENTER
 


                                                                                                                                               
 




 
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ABOUT
ROUNDTRIP SIGHTSEEING TOURS

Roundtrip Sightseeing Tour service is very specialized and different from any other Transportation Charter Party Carrier of Passengers (TCP) operation in that:

Roundtrip Sightseeing Tour license allows the operator to take unrelated parties (individuals) in the same vehicle on a roundtrip sightseeing tour "loop" based on the operator's itinerary of events pre-advertised for a particular tour: visiting a sequence of points and places of interest chosen by the operator. Any individual may pay to join (hop-on) the roundtrip tour at any ticketing location/point and be returned to each individual's start point and "hops off" or pays to continue another tour. Remember, the operator must collect fares on per person per roundtrip basis.

Roundtrip Sightseeing Tours may be performed under  TCP-##-A or S.  

TCP-A versus TCP-S

TCP-A

TCP-S

"A" Certificate: PUC 5371.1 and 5383. (The "PUC" numbers here and other related sections of the California Public Utilities Code that define and describe the particular type of TCP authority).
What an "A" certificate allows:

  Chartered service (a service exclusive to one party - an individual or a group)

  May operate vehicles of any seating capacity

  May operate from any point to any point within California

  May also conduct round-trip sightseeing, as an "S" permit,
    and may charge individual fares in doing so.

  Except for round-trip sightseeing, charges must be based
    on vehicle mileage, time of use, or combination.

  Present filing fee is  $1.500. Renewal fee is $100.

  May be transferred, presently for $300 (see below for new fees)

"S" Permit: PUC 5384(c). The "PUC" number here and other related sections of the California Public Utilities Code that define and describe the particular type of TCP authority).
What an "S" permit allows:
 This is for carriers conducting "round-trip sightseeing tour service."

May operate vehicles of any seating capacity

May operate from any point to any point within California

May charge individual fares. May also base charges on vehicle
mileage, time of use, or combination. (The "A" certificate is the only
other type of TCP authority that allows individual charges, only
when conducting round-trip sightseeing tour service.)

May not be transferred.

present filing fee is
  $1000. Renewal fee is
  $100. (see below for new fees)

 

California Code - Section 5371.1
(a) No charter-party carrier of passengers issued a class A certificate subject to this section shall be restricted as to point of origin or destination in the State of California.

(b) Every application for a certificate or permit, or renewal thereof, shall be accompanied by the appropriate fee as specified in Section 5373.1.
   
There is no limit to the size of vehicles you may operate TCP-A or S Be aware that the seating capacity of your largest vehicle will determine: 

(1) whether you are subject to CHP bus safety inspections, both before your certificate is issued, and annually thereafter, and

(2) the level of public liability and property damage insurance you will be required to maintain on file with the CPUC.

 

 SEE IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT FEES Below

IMPORTANT NOTE:
Legislation enacted during 2010 (AB 2572) and effective January 1, 2011 will change new application fees for charter-party "B", "C", "P", "S" and "Z" authorities from $500 to $1,000. Any new applications received by the License Section after December 31, 2010 (regardless of postmark) will not be processed without the required $1,000 filing fee. AB 2572 has also changed charter-party renewal fees from $500 to $100. Only authorities whose expiration dates are after December 31, 2010 will be renewed for this $100 fee.

   

   
          Now, because "
Class A" charter party carrier certificate (TCP-A) which allows the performance of any charter service from any point to any other point in the State of California also allows for the performance of Roundtrip Sightseeing Services described above. However, unlike TCP-S,  TCP-A is a certificate and may be sold or transferred to another owner. Make note and report to the PUC enforcement/compliance unit, the CHP or local authorities, any customer whose conduct does not conform to safe and through operation of a roundtrip sightseeing tour.          

Roundtrip Sightseeing

Passenger Stage

  • a shared-ride tour service,
  • fares are collected per person  per roundtrip
  • not a point-to-point transportation service
  • may service any point or place of interest in the State of California
  • may take tourists through a sequence of points of interest based on the operator's itinerary of events for the specific tour following the safest path authorized by zoning laws: any appearance of a regular route may simply be incidental.
  • roundtrip sightseeing fares for each trip depends on the operator based on the length of time or mileage for the roundtrip and does not require  PUC  approval for the specific fare amount.
  • state and federal laws prohibit discrimination with respect to seating of  the passengers being transported based on race or creed or code
  •  read and compare more later......
  • a shared-ride fixed points service
  • fares are tariff based per person fares between fixed points
  • service is primarily travel or commuter related service
  • service is a transportation service restricted by the California PUC to transport passengers between PUC authorized, specific, points for a PUC authorized, specific, fare between any two authorized points.
  • service requires PUC approval to change fares and charges.
  • service transports passengers and their baggage; and or baggage express if authorized.
  • service is certainly not a sightseeing service, any sightseeing that appears to occur is incidental and particular to each passenger being transported
  • state and federal laws prohibit discrimination with respect to seating of  the passengers being transported based on race or creed or code
  • read and compare more later
.......... read and compare more later
  1. it is not a pre-arranged charter service as in the case of a "common carrier" (such as TCP-A, B, or P) where:
  2. TCP-S may be compared to passenger stage service (PSC) in:

        Remember, TCP-S is in its similarity to passenger stage service (PSC) in:

  • offering a shared tour-ride service, and
  • the collection of individual fares
    • TCP-S fares per roundtrip
    • TCP-S as per state and federal laws must not discriminate with respect to seating of  the individuals participating in any roundtrip sightseeing tour based on race or creed or code.

However,

  • TCP-S is not a transportation service
  • TCP-S may service any point or place of interest in the State of California.
  • TCP-S may take tourists through a sequence of points of interest based on the operator's itinerary of events for the specific tour following the safest part authorized by zoning laws:
    • any appearance of a regular route may simply be incidental.
  • TCP-S roundtrip sightseeing fares for each trip depends on the operator based on the length of time or mileage for the roundtrip and does not require  PUC  approval for the specific fare amount.
  • TCP-S is the purest tour service license and is included in TCP-A.








 But, TCP-S is very distinct from other TCP services in that Roundtrip Sightseeing Tour service is very specialized and different from any other Transportation Charter Party Carrier of Passengers (TCP) operation as follows:
it is not a pre-arranged as in the case of a "common carrier" (such as TCP-A, B, or P) where:

  • the service performed is for a single load/client (an individual or a group). the service is performed on an exclusive basis.
  • the service is paid for on the basis of time  of use ($$ per hour) and or mileage ($$ per mile) or a combination thereof.
  • tours are performed pre-arranged per individual or group basis. the service performed is dictated by the client.
  • the operator only provides transportation and complementary services.
  • TCP-A, B or P are pure transportation licenses compared to TCP-S.

Ask the  CALIFORNIA PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMISSION (PUC) - License Section ; or call the PUC at (800) 877-8867.  YOU ARE IN CONTROL as you pay for Time or Mileage. Anyone can use a tour-bus! They take you directly to your home or business or wherever you want within the state.
All tour-bus operators with the proper operating authority (license) know how to quote the fares (charges) based strictly as described above.  Any carrier that charges otherwise (Licensed or Not) is an illegal (or Bandit) operator; that is, an operator  operating beyond the scope of its authority, and a possible danger to the public. NOTE, if an operator ignores one rule he/she is more likely to ignore other safety (or pricing) rules. 

In California, "share-ride" Shuttles also known as Passenger Stage Corporations are licensed (granted a "certificate of public convenience and necessity (CPCN)") to operate at the public's convenience.  A shuttle operator is one has prepared and filed a formal Application, gone through the rigors of the application process and has been qualified or authorized by the California Public Utilities Commission to serve a specific route or operate between specific points.
          All Charter Party Carriers of Passengers (TCP) are required to post their License Number in a prescribed manner:
TCP - # - letter designation of (A) or (B) or (P), etc, denoting the type of service the carrier is authorized to provide. Because TCP does not have specific service points or tariffs they can take you anywhere in the State and change their negotiable Rates at will prior to each service: terminate service under inhospitable situations.         
          For information about California TCP licenses, you may  contact the PUBLIC UTILITIES COMMISSION (PUC) - License Section
at (800) 877-8867.
          Regarding airport shuttle services, you may also call the airport's "Landside Operations Unit (the department that controls ground transportation at the airport)" of the respective airports for safety concerns they might have about any carrier that serves the airport. With shuttles, Safety and the proper application of the fares is always of concern: some carriers may risk passenger safety in traffic or operate uninsured equipment or use unqualified drivers, on the one hand, or charge fares not authorized in the Tariff, on the other hand.

        
 This webpage has been published to assist you and any member of the public learn more about shuttle services, find and reserve properly licensed shuttle services, and to encourage shuttle companies to operate properly and safely.
         
WE encourage you to make your RESERVATION on this web site; we take care of all the arrangements and provision of proper service for you for no additional charge to you.  Remember, we help license some of the best companies that serve the public today: this company has been formed by a former regulator with public safety and fare market practices in mind.

 

 

 

                                           
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 










 

 
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